Fort Keeper

She gave this name to the Lord who spoke to her:
“You are the God who sees me.”
—Genesis 16:13


The head of our household is away again for another week, and I am “holding down the fort.” What an interesting phrase. Doing it is as exhausting as it sounds. Alone—no one to share the daily chores and raising of the kids. And why do the nighttime noises seem louder and the smoke detectors beep in the middle of the night when he is away?

Debbie holds down the fort and preps for a big move. El Roi sees her—sees you.

While he’s gone, life goes on as usual: teaching, disciplining, laundry, cleaning, and answering the dreaded “What’s for dinner tonight?” Often it’s hot dogs and mac and cheese when “Dad” is away. I spend my time trying to make the days special while he’s gone and finding creative ways for the kids to keep in touch with their dad until he’s home again. The kids and I do it because we are part of the team with Dad. Our family works together to see that the work is done.

Sometimes it feels less glamorous to be the one left behind. He packs his bags and heads off to help with a maintenance project or to learn a new skill. We wave, he goes, and our lives remain the same—just without him. We miss him, we are proud of him, and it is a sacrifice we are willing to make to see the work continue.

Missionary moms and wives around the globe are doing this every day, in different places and for different reasons. So here’s a shout-out to the ladies who do an amazing job of doing their part without much fanfare. No plaque or engraved pen presented in appreciation. No rah-rah sessions here.

I see you out there, but more importantly…

Our God—El Roi—is the One who sees us. He is our Shepherd, and though we might not have a plaque or a pen with our name on it, we know our name is written on the palms of His hands.


  • Anne says:

    Yes, the whole family are the missionaries, not just daddy. It means more to the children when they understand and accept their role. Thank you for serving our Lord with these precious souls.

  • Phyllis Dayton says:

    Hey Deb we are with you all the way! Love you so much! Love , Mom & Dad

  • Nancy Hawes says:

    What a blessing to read your writings from time to time, Debbie, and to see all that God has done deeply in your heart and through your day to day lives! Your love for your God, your family and others shines brighty! Hugs and Blessings

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